Associations in the Greco-Roman World (AGRW)

An expanding collection of inscriptions, papyri, and other sources in translation (run by Philip A. Harland)

[305] Honors by a Corporate Body of Judeans for a Benefactor (late I BCE) Berenike - Cyrenaica

Berenike (Cyrenaica, Egypt — Pleiades map), late I BCE (March 30)
AGRW 305 = IBerenike 18 = CJZC 70 = SEG 16 (1976), no. 931 and SEG 48 (1998), no. 2048 = AGRW ID# 3311


Slab of marble with moulded gable and moulded base, heavily worn on the top left section (hence the fragmentary beginning). The term politeuma (here translated “corporate body”), which can also be used in reference to a body of citizens (as at Chios), is attested for associations of various types, including those formed by military settlers (see the inscriptions from Sidon, under Syria). It does not necessarily connote a body formally recognized by political institutions as previously believed (see Lüderitz 1994). This group uses the same self-designation in another inscription, and it seems that the same group also refered to itself as a “synagogue” in later decades (see 306-307).

In third year on the fifth of Phamenoth, during the leadership (archonship) of . . . (missing names) . . . Dorion son of Ptolemaios, Zela . . . son of Gnaius, Ariston son of Arasas (?), . . . son of Andromachos, Nikia son of . . . , Name son of Simon.

Whereas Decimus Valerius Dionysios son of Gaius . . . is an honorable and good man and continues . . . and does good whenever he is able, both for the community and for each of the citizens individually, and . . . he had the amphitheater floors plastered and the walls painted.

The leaders and the corporate body (politeuma) of the Judeans in Berenike resolved to engrave his name in the . . . and to be free from services (leitourgia) of every kind. Likewise they resolved to also crown him with an olive crown and wool ribbon at each meeting (synodos) and new moon. Now after they have engraved the decree on a monument of white Parian stone, let the leaders (archontes) place it in a conspicous place in the amphitheater.

All pebbles white (i.e. unanimous positive results of the vote).
Decimus Valerius Dionysios son of Gaius plastered the floors and painted the amphitheater at his own expense, a contribution to the corporate body.

Translation by: Harland

(ἔτους) [.]γ̣΄Φ[αμ]ένωθ ε΄ἐπὶ ἀρχόντων Ἀ̣ρ̣ίμμα τοῦ | [..7..]ος Δωρίωνος τοῦ Πτολεμαίου | Ζ̣ε̣λ̣α̣ι̣ου τοῦ [Γ]ναίου Ἀρίστωνος τοῦ Ἀραξ̣α|[..]ν̣τ̣ο̣ς̣ Σ̣αρα[πί]ω̣νος τοῦ Ἀνδρομάχου Νικία || τ[οῦ..9-10..]Α̣[.]Σ̣Α̣[....] τ̣ο̣ῦ̣ Σίμωνος ν. ἐπεὶ | [Δέκ]μος Ο[ὐαλέριος Γ]αίο[υ Διον]ύσιος Π̣Ρ̣ΗΠ̣ΟΤΗΣ | [..c.9..]Ω̣Γ̣Η̣Σ̣ ἀνὴρ καλὸς καὶ ἀγαθὸς ὢν δια|τελε[ῖ ? λόγῳ καὶ ἔργῳ καὶ αἱρ]έσε̣ι̣ καὶ ποιῶν ἀγαθὸν | [ὅτι] ἂ̣[ν] δ[ύνηται καὶ κοι]ν̣ᾶι καὶ ἰδίαι ἐκάστωι τῶν || π̣[ο]λ̣ἰ̣τ̣[ων] καὶ δ[ὴ καὶ] ἐκονίασεν τοῦ ἀνφιθεάτρου | τ[ὸ ἔδ]α̣φος καὶ το̣ὺ̣[ς] τ̣οίχους ἐζωγράφησεν | ἔ[δοξε τοῖς ἄ]ρχουσι καὶ τῶι πολιτεύματι | τ̣[ῶν] ἐ̣ν̣ Β̣ε̣ρ̣ν̣ι̣κ̣ί̣δ̣ι̣ Ἰ̣ο̣υ̣δαίων καταγράψαι αὐτὸν εἰς | τὸ τ̣ῶ̣ν̣ τ[..c.6..]ΕΥΕΙ̣Σ̣Υ̣Δ̣Ι̣Ο̣Υ̣ κ̣α̣ὶ̣ εἶεν ἀλειτούρ||γητο[ν πά]σης [λε]ιτουρ[γί]ας [ὁ]μ̣οίως δὲ καὶ στε|φα[νοῦν α]ὐτὸν καθ’ ἑκάστην σύνοδον καὶ νουμ̣η̣|νία̣ν̣ σ̣τ̣ε̣[φ]άνωι [ἐλ]αίνωι καὶ λημνίσκωι ὀνομαστί | τὸ [δ]ὲ ψήφισμα τόδε ἀναγράψαντες οἱ ἄρχον[τες] | [εἰ]ς̣ στήλην λίθου Παρίου θέτωσαν εἰς τὸν ἐ[πι]||[σημ]ό̣τατον [τόπ]ον τοῦ ἀμφιθεάτρου vac. | vac. λευκαὶ πᾶσαι vac. vac. | Δέκμος Οὐαλέριος Γαίου Διονύσιος | τὸ ἔ̣[δ]α̣[φ]ος ἐκονίασεν καὶ τὸ ἀμφι|θέατρον καὶ ἐζωγράφησεν τοῖς || ἰδίοις δαπανήμασιν ἐπίδομα | vac. τῶι πολιτεύμασιν vac.

Item added: September 22, 2012
Item modified: January 12, 2016
ID number: 3311
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